Please let me rephrase that, most Americans can't do A squat.
WHY? As Americans, we are chronic sitters. Sitting creates weak gluteus muscles and weak abdominals. This unfortunately, is not a good combination for back stability and is one main reason more than 85% Americans experience back pain their lifetime.
I know firsthand in my own back and I see this every day in practice. I do a postural analysis on my patients and can quickly analyze where a person is carrying muscle tension and clearly spot weak muscle patterns. This combination of tight and weak muscles, directly impedes core and leg stability. There is a simple functional test for stability that is, well, simply a squat.
I observe and analyze form, while the participant is doing a non weighted squatting exercise. You fail this test if: your legs shake or knees move sideways, hips or back twists, shoulders dip, or head jerks. They movement should be nice and smooth. Any jerky, shaky movement is a positive for muscle weakness and joint instability in that area. As a chiropractor it is my job to find and correct the misaligned spine and any lower extremity joints I find involved in or causing the instability. Vertebral misalignments of the spine, known as subluxations, irritate exiting spinal nerves causing effected muscles to test weak.
With muscle testing I can quickly find which muscles that are being neurologically shorted, and remedy the situation by adjusting the related subluxated vertebrae. This technique is known as Applied Kinesiology. Realigning of the extremities with adjustments is called Extremity Chiropractic. As Physio Therapist, I additionally find and work the areas of muscular tension, about seven different techniques depending on the situation. Lastly I design an exercise program for areas of weakness that we found in the initial evaluation.
Please refer to my last blog article, "Weak, Twisted Back" article for further information.